The 2019 Prize

The Desmond Elliott Prize, ‘the most prestigious award for first-time novelists’ (Daily Telegraph), is now accepting submissions for 2019. The £10,000 Prize is presented in the name of the acclaimed publisher and literary agent Desmond Elliott, whose personal commitment to finding and nurturing new authors is commemorated with this award.

The Desmond Elliott Prize is given to a debut novel from any genre, published between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019. The judges will be looking for a novel which has a compelling narrative, arresting characters and which is both vividly written and confidently realised.

A longlist of ten books will be announced on Tuesday 2 April 2019, and a shortlist on Friday 10 May 2019. The winner will then be revealed at a London ceremony on Wednesday 19 June 2019.

Previous winners of the prize are: Preti Taneja for We That Are Young (2018); Francis Spufford for Golden Hill (2017); Lisa McInerney for The Glorious Heresies (2016); Claire Fuller for Our Endless Numbered Days (2015); Eimear McBride for A Girl is a Half-formed Thing (2014); Ros Barber for The Marlowe Papers (2013); Grace McCleen for The Land of Decoration (2012); Anjali Joseph for Saraswati Park (2011); Ali Shaw for The Girl With Glass Feet (2010); Edward Hogan for Blackmoor (2009); and Nikita Lalwani for Gifted (2008).

Each year a trio of judges is appointed by The Desmond Elliott Prize Trustees. The 2019 panel will be announced in January.

In 2019, the Desmond Elliott Prize will be working directly with major book retailers, independent bookshops and book wholesalers to promote those titles selected for the prize. In particular for those short listed and the winning title where the Prize will endeavour to secure front of store retail promotions.

The deadline for entries to the 2019 Prize is Friday 30 November 2018. You can find more information on how to submit a novel and read the rules and entry requirements on the submissions pages.